Saturday, January 23, 2010

Rain, rain, go away

It's been raining cats and dogs all week. Everyone has had to put on boots...

...and raincoats.

In addition to engaging in an endless cycle of preparing to go out, getting soaked, coming in, drying off, and in the process splattering the front hall and stairs with water, we've also been eating a lot of soup.  I made minestrone earlier in the week, to which I added--you guessed it--some red cabbage, which turned the whole soup a shocking purple. But don't worry, I understand I've pushed the cabbage limit here. So instead, I'll tell you about the plain and simple potato leek soup I made last night.

Although, what's to tell? Saute some leeks, add potatoes, garlic, and chicken broth, simmer, puree, add cream, salt and pepper. Garnish with parsley (chives would have been ideal but there were none in the house). Serve with crunchy garlic toast.

You can tell I got a little overzealous with the garnish. I have trouble keeping a light hand with herbs. I get excited sprinkling them over the top of things. They look pretty in the moment but clumpy in a photo. Oh well. You'd never know I'm the daughter of an artist.

The soup was warm and comforting and exactly what we wanted as the rain poured down outside and we settled on the couch, Frances at our feet, waiting for toast crumbs. We ate while watching "Hope For Haiti Now," which I have to say was impressive. In addition to being quite moving in some parts, the husband and I also got to ogle our respective celebrity girlfriends (Beyonce and Reese Witherspoon) and boyfriends (George Clooney and John Legend).

We went online and made a donation, but immediately afterward I started feeling like it wasn't enough. When people say, "Give what you can," many of us probably fib a little to ourselves. I started thinking about the fact that we just bought iPhones, and how they cost quite a bit more than what we had donated. I sense another donation in the near future.

Compassion and guilt can go hand in hand, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Take it from me, a fundraiser by day. You want people to give, no matter what compels them. But whether or not you donate, we can all keep the people of Haiti in our thoughts--while holding those we love close and keeping them warm.


  1. Hahah, my glam rocker days all over, but maybe I can find an old photo....hmmm will look into that:)

    Gunilla in Singapore

  2. Dahhhling, dont feel guilty about your iphone. You are going to love it, its going to be your new best friend ;). You gave, which is more than some people do. The amount doesn't matter that much, that you actually did something is the important thing.
    ... and that soup looks lovely.
    Hope you have a wonderful weekend.
    *kisses* HH

  3. Heavenly Housewife is right, I think giving any amount is definitely something. Love the cupcakey gumboots :) And snap, we had potato and leek soup today too, but I added cauliflower as well, and used turkey stock from the Christmas turkey.

  4. First, it is below freezing temps in Florida followed by endless rain. The ground is saturated and muddy here too. I know California is getting drenched these days. Stay dry.

    We have made a contribution for the people of Haiti. They remain in our thoughts each day. Their "can do" spirit amongst the devastation moves me emotionally each day.

  5. I love love love those rainboots!

  6. Love the sound of that soup, perfect for a rainy day. Heh, dog clothes always amuse me. Probably because there's no way I could get something like that on my cats.

  7. the texting thing was genius for raising funds. Now that we have given, let's hope that the gov't gets it right down there and it all goes where it will do the most good

  8. If your potato-leek soup is puréed like that, you can call it "Potage Parmentier." Look! You just made a fancy French dish! :) Such a good, cheap, warming meal on cold, rainy winter nights. And garlic toast sounds wonderful right about now.

  9. love the doggie coat! and your soup! your soup looks so creamy! potato soup is a staple during these dismal days. :)

  10. A Home Far Away: There's got to be one left of you from your glam days!

    HH: I'm already totally digging the I understand the hype.

    shaz: I thought you might like the boots! And cauliflower would be a great addition to the soup.

    Velva: I'm sure the people of Haiti will get through this, but it's tough to see so much suffering in the here and now.

    Chef AImee: thanks!

    Bob: I think one of the key differences between dogs and cats is the indignity they will put up with!

    A Yea on the Grill: I couldn't agree more.

    croquecamille: really? How cool that I made something that sounds so chic! :)

    grace: thanks! surprisingly, the dog doesn't seem to mind the coat either...

  11. I MUST get a coat like that for my golden!!Its been so cold I have not been walking him...hes sooo pissed. :( What delicious looking soup.

  12. This kind of soup is just what we all need with all this rainy damp weather!

  13. Look at all of these comments, damn, you're popular!

  14. super cute boots!
    The soups sounds like a perfect thing for rainy weather.

  15. ooh I just got taters and leeks this weekend, great minds eh? I love JC's recipe... The herbal splattering looks very artistically done, not heavy handed at all, barely a smattering.

  16. figtree: I recommend the coats! Your dog's head and rear quarter will still get wet but everything the coat covers stays dry. We got ours at REI for about $20.

    Kathleen: Yes, I think soup is perfect for rainy weather!

    egg to the apples: ha ha!

    Olga: yeah, I love those boots--I feel like they were made for me!

    foodhoe: sounds like you have the makings for a perfect soup of your own! Thanks for complimenting my Jackson Pollack tendencies...

  17. Hungry Dog has a raincoat? I love it! And the boots, by the way.

    Know what you mean about guilt. But we can only do what we can and we are a generous people. Doing without iPhones is not going to help the poor Haitian people. You've donated and sound like you're going to donate more. No guilt.

  18. Soup is always great in rainy weather. And good for you for donating to the Haiti relief. Did you get to talk with a star when you called?

  19. It has definitely been soup weather! I love the simplicity of a leek and potato soup. So creamy without too much cream. I don't think you went heavy-handed with the herbs at all. It looks great!

  20. Beautiful, rich soup and I LOVE that our pups have almost matching raincoats! Indy's is yellow, with a bit of reflective tape so she doesn't totally disappear in the dark. We call her a "bee dog" since she's all black and yellow when she wears it. I LOVE your slippers, by the way!

  21. I adore those cupcake rain boots. Uh, I guess they don't make them in my size, though, huh? Drat! ;)

  22. I've never made potato leek soup! It sounds too easy to pass it up.

    Btw, I love those boots. Rainboots are my fave.

  23. Barbara: thanks, you're right. Sometimes you just need to have your guilt assuaged by someone else I guess...

    Ben: Ha! I wish. I donated online but maybe if I'd called I could have talked to Matt Damon.

    Apples and Butter: thanks! And yes, what I love about these soups is that you can add cream or not and still get a lovely texture.

    denise: bee dog--that's too cute. Wish our pups could meet!

    Food Gal: Oh I'm sure they do...believe it or not, those are adult boots.

    Jessica: Give it a try--it can really hit the spot on a rainy day.

  24. Soup definitely warms your wet and weary bones. I'd kinda like to hear more about the one you put the cabbage in though. I'm trying to figure out what to do with red cabbage. Really! : )

    And, I agree that we need to really hold Haiti in our thoughts and prayers. And our wallets.

  25. Love the boots, like everyone else. I wish I had a pair these last few layovers in SFO. Lordy, I am still drying off!
    Soup looks marvelous, love the bowls and the dish towel. The parsley looks good. I have a DVD on food styling you may be interested in. I am willing to share. Email me at
    Don;t feel guilt, you gave. Every time you go to Whole Foods Market you can give again. They keep shaking me down every trip!

  26. oneordinaryday: Well, for the other soup--minestrone--I just used Giada de L's recipe, which I know by heart and think is great--and added half a head of thinly sliced red cabbage. I thought it turned out really nicely although it didn't end up looking like regular minestrone--it was totally purple.

    Pam: Thanks for all the compliments! I'm going to email you to get the name of that DVD. We have a break in the rain--at least for the moment--hopefully next time you're passing through it won't be as hideously wet as it's been!

  27. I absolutely love your style & humor! And your soup recipe is straightforward and easy, plus it looks perfect for those days when the rain just want go away...